The Detroit Lions are 10-4 right now, with a playoff spot and a division title all but certain right now. It's just a matter of their playoff seed, and who they might face in their first playoff game at Ford Field. It's refreshing to be talking that way in December, rather than what has been regular talk about draft pick positioning at this time of the year.
The Lions also have some roster decisions coming. C.J. Gardner-Johnson, Jason Cabinda, James Houston and Alim McNeill are moving toward being able to come off IR, with Gardner-Johnson and Cabinda set to start their 21-day practice windows this week.
The Lions made their expected decision to add rookie quarterback Hendon Hooker to the active roster on Tuesday, as his 21-day practice window expired. The corresponding move there was easy, with kicker Riley Patterson waived to clear the roster spot. Michael Badgley was called up from the practice squad to do the placekicking last week, which spelled the end for Patterson.
The moves to make room for Gardner-Johnson, Cabinda, Houston and McNeill, etc. won't all be quite as easy. Badgley and veteran edge rusher Bruce Irvin are also on the practice squad, and they'll need to be added to the 53-man roster at some point soon too.
Setbacks for returning injured players would change the equation, but let's assume there are no hiccups and the Lions have to clear several roster spots within the next couple weeks. Who could be let go to make room? More specifically, which players will be waived and thus the risk is accepted that said player(s) will be claimed by another team.
These five Lions are on proverbial bubble as a crunch for roster spots approaches.